There was pleasant surprise and spontaneous applause, back slapping and a few teary eyes as Kukogho Iruesiri Samson was announced winner of the inaugural GTB Dusty Manuscript contest for his novel manuscript, Devil’s Pawn. His novel, alongside the First and Second runners up will be published by Farafina under its Breeze imprint.
Kukogho Iruesiri Samson will also receive a N1m prize while the 2nd and 3rd runners up would receive N500,000 and N250,000, respectively.
Launched on February 7, 2018, the contest received 1,135 entries from young and aspiring Nigerian writers who submitted previously unpublished works. The call asked, specifically, for genre fiction manuscripts.
Commenting on the choice of Kukogho Iruesiri Samson as winner, the judges, made up of Ainehi Edoro-Glines, Eghosa Imasuen, Yejide Kilanko and Toni Kan, praised the novel in their citation– “The winning entry was a unanimous choice…The story is the best example of the possibilities inherent in genre fiction switching from crime to adventure, thriller to horror. Told in a fast paced narrative style that keeps you glued to the pages, our winning entry is a gift that keeps on giving.”
The first and second runners up are – The Orchid Protocol by Onochie Emeka Onyekwena and The Other Side of Truth by Nneoma Anieto, respectively.
The Top 20 writers attended a two-day boot camp in Lagos. The boot camp was facilitated by the judges.
The Dusty Manuscript prize, organised in conjunction with Okadabooks and Farafina, is part of GTBank’s YouRead initiative aimed at promoting reading and inspiring the next generation of award winning and globally recognized writers.